Here is the press release:
ROCHESTER, N.Y., Sept. 12, 2012 /PRNewswire/ — Eastman Kodak Company, the worldwide leader in retail imaging solutions, with a global footprint of 105,000 KODAK Picture Kiosks, On Demand Books, and ReaderLink today announced they have partnered to revolutionize the way all types of printed books will be marketed, sold and produced at point of sale. The venture brings together On Demand Books’ innovative, in-store Espresso Book Machine® to national retailers integrated with KODAK Picture Kiosks, giving consumers a full-service digital-to-print media center for all their custom print needs: from photo books, custom/local self-published titles, to educational supplements, and more.
On Demand Books is also working with ReaderLink to bring in-copyright titles to non-trade bookseller channels, allowing customers to have immediate access to a vast array of non-stocked and backlist titles at point of sale. ReaderLink is the largest full-service distributor of books in North America, distributing thousands of books to over 24,000 retail outlets across virtually all substantial mass market, club, drug and grocery chains in the United States.
The Espresso Book Machine, the only digital-to-print at retail solution on the market today, has begun to dramatically change the book industry by giving consumers the ability to produce a self-published book, or print on demand a book from more than seven million in-copyright or public domain titles, in less than four minutes. By integrating this solution with the KODAK Picture Kiosk, this capability will be expanded to produce perfect bound, high-quality Kodak Photo Books in minutes for in-store pick up.
“Our partnership with On Demand Books delivers exciting new capabilities to consumers and retailers, and is a great example of Kodak’s focus on bringing innovation to market,” said Laura Quatela, President of Kodak. “Consumers will enjoy getting from our valued retail partners immediate delivery of a whole new offering of high-quality photo books as well as a broad library of book titles. In addition, our retail partners will have new avenues for increased revenue as they expand their photo book sales in-store and deliver a massive list of book titles to their customers instantly.”
Dane Neller, CEO of On Demand Books adds, “We are thrilled to be able to work with ReaderLink and our publisher partners to bring a broad list of book titles to Kodak’s vast, worldwide retail footprint and expand the capabilities of the Espresso Book Machine to produce photo books. We envision an integrated solution that can substantially redefine the publishing industry and bring exciting new solutions to customers.”
The partnership will involve North American retailers during 2012 and then expand internationally in 2013. The integrated KODAK Picture Kiosk and On Demand Books solution will include the following features and functionality:
Integration of the Espresso Book Machine and EspressNet® with the KODAK Picture Kiosk
Ability to print and bind paperback photo books using KODAK Printers in just minutes
Access to more than 7 million in-copyright or public domain books via On Demand’s digital database
Assistance with creation and ability to print self-published books of all types
Reporting of transactions and customer analytics to both retailers and publishers
Kodak has a market leadership position in the photo category with worldwide installations of kiosks with national retailers such as CVS/pharmacy in the US, DM in Germany and Officeworks in Australia, among many others.
As the world’s foremost imaging innovator, Kodak helps consumers, businesses, and creative professionals unleash the power of pictures and printing to enrich their lives.
(Kodak is a trademark of Eastman Kodak Company).
About On Demand Books
On Demand Books was cofounded in 2003 by Jason Epstein, former Editorial Director of Random House; Dane Neller, former CEO of Dean & DeLuca; and Thor Sigvaldason, former technology consultant at PricewaterhouseCoopers. Espresso Book Machines have been placed in bookstores, libraries, universities, and other locations in the USA, Canada, the UK, the Middle East, Asia, Australia, and the Caribbean. Made in the USA, Espresso Book Machines are environmentally efficient, reducing production, shipping, and waste. For more information, go to www.ondemandbooks.com.
ReaderLink Distribution Services, LLC is the largest full-service book distributor in the North America and is a recognized leader in distribution logistics, value-added category management services, field services and business analytics. ReaderLink is located in Oak Brook, IL. For more information, go to www.readerlink.com.
SOURCE Eastman Kodak Company
PR Newswire (http://s.tt/1naF7)
This is certain to put yet more pressure on independent and chain bookstores. Just as Red Box was a blow to Blockbuster and Netflix, bookstores will be losing customers to the ’round-the-corner, on-demand access to books that On Demand Books will provide through these kiosks and newsstands.
One might imagine that this is also a blow to Amazon. However, I can foresee that Amazon will soon form an agreement with On Demand Books to print CreateSpace books on Espresso Book Machines, if not already being done.
I also foresee Barnes & Noble making the move to put an Espresso Book Machine in each of its stores, in order to compete. Independent stores will be pressed to do the same, although may will not be able to afford it, nor will they see any considerable ROI from such an investment.
The Espresso Book Machine is also very friendly to author-published books. The ability for an author to market and distribute her own books within driving distance of most every city dweller in the U.S., at very little cost, will certainly help the author-publishing trend to continue growing. This puts pressure not only on bookstores, but on book publishers.
If the around-the-corner on-demand books (I hereby coin the acronym ATCOD) catch on, it would cause a great upheaval in publishing. Yes, another great upheaval, which now seems to occur in this industry on a quarterly basis. Publishers and book distributors have invested heavily in warehouses and large print runs that sit patiently—and expensively—for their day. They have invested heavily in an extensive and labyrinthine distribution system, and they have invested heavily in sealing contracts with authors and book producers. All of that investment is at risk if the average author can simply upload a book and the average consumer can simply print the book to put in their grocery cart.
I was certain FedEx Office (Kinko’s) would have been the first to set up kiosk Espresso Book Machines. I never would have predicted Eastman Kodak to be the one. Still, the paradigm shift has come just about on the day I expected. I had written Sept. 16, 2012, on my prediction log.
It’s surprising that Kodak wants to focus primarily on consumer-published photo books. There’s a warning there: If the author-publishing movement has created a stir, just imagine what a shift to consumer-published books would do.
What does the Espresso Book Machine “takeover” mean for authors? One of the biggest challenges in marketing books is that there is often a delay between the point where the target reader agrees that the author’s book would be good to buy and the actual transaction. Somewhere in this delay, the reader often forgets or loses interest. Ebook readers have eliminated the delay, for the most part, but for the majority of readers who buy printed books, the gap can still be fairly long, especially if the book needs to be specially ordered.
Now, with an Espresso Book machine in “virtually all substantial mass market, club, drug and grocery chains in the United States” as well as “with a global footprint of 105,000 KODAK Picture Kiosks,” the decide-purchase-read gap is shortened. Authors can now encourage readers to go down to their grocery to pick up the books within minutes. This will increase the effective response rate to most marketing efforts, especially those marketing campaigns that reach readers at home or on mobile devices. FourSquare marketing and positionally aware marketing will also be more effective.
This also gives rise to an entirely new level of marketing for most book publishers, although it may be beyond the budgets of most authors: in-store point-of-purchase marketing. Just as a Red Box video vending kiosk has a sign showing the movies in stock, the Espresso Book Machine kiosks will prominently display featured titles. I suspect that this advertisement area will become some of the most effective real estate in book marketing.
Author-published books are relatively easy through On Demand Books. Unlike other POD printers, On Demand Books is a one-stop print-and-sell solution for authors. The author supplies a PDF of the book and a PDF of the cover, as well as an ISBN. There is no set-up fee; On Demand Books deducts printing costs and a processing fee from the sale and the remaining profit is deposited into the author’s account directly. It’s as easy as CreateSpace or Kindle books, but with wider and more open distribution. For those authors who until now have only been able to publish their works as ebooks, this represents a chance to easily reach the print-book market, especially now that the books will be available in every grocery store and drug store.
Can coffee-shop book kiosks be far behind? That’s my next prediction for the Espresso Book Machine: Starbucks and McDonald’s!
So here is the question for my readers:
What opportunities do you see for yourself or your business in the sudden escalation of the Espresso Book Machine footprint?